Updated: December 15, 2021

Getting a Mortgage After a Repossession

Hoping to get a mortgage after a repossession? This guide will tell you how it’s done.

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Pete Mugleston

Author: Pete Mugleston - Mortgage Expert

Updated: December 15, 2021

Repossessions are generally considered one of the more severe types of bad credit, and many people who have one listed on their credit file wrongly believe that they might never get another mortgage again.

There are many factors to take into consideration, but yes, it is possible to get a mortgage after repossession, and in this guide, we’ll tell you how it can be done, how long you’ll need to wait and where to get the right advice.

Can you get a mortgage after a repossession?

Yes, it’s possible! The older the incident, the more likely it will be that you could secure a mortgage. Lenders will also focus on the amount of debt involved and the circumstances surrounding the repossession.

So, if the repossession took place within the last 12 months, there are no lenders that we are aware of prepared to even consider your mortgage application. If your property was repossessed within the last 3-4 years, it will still be quite difficult, but not impossible.

From 5-6 years onwards, there’s a greater chance that more lenders will consider you for a mortgage. As with all bad credit situations, time is the great healer.

What happens when your house is repossessed?

When a property is repossessed, it is sold to cover the cost of your mortgage plus all legal costs incurred by the lender in gaining a repossession order. This is bad news if you are in negative equity, as the sale price probably won’t cover the outstanding mortgage.

If this is the case, then you may still have to pay the outstanding amount back to the lender. This is called a legacy payment, and could reduce the number of lenders available to you.

If the circumstances were beyond your control, such as illness, redundancy etc, then they will look at your application with a little more sympathy.

The key to getting a mortgage with a repossession on your credit file is to find an experienced broker, one who specialises in finding mortgages for people who have a repossession on their credit history.

Do you have to declare your repossession?

Yes you do. Even if the incident has been removed from your credit report, you must declare it if you’re asked by the mortgage provider.

The reason is that repossession is viewed by lenders as an extremely severe adverse credit event, just like bankruptcy. If you fail to declare it when asked, and the incident comes to light later on, the lender will more than probably decline your application.

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How to get a mortgage after a repossession

Some preliminary work will help your application go through smoothly.

Here are a couple of things you need to do to give your mortgage application the best chance for a successful outcome.

  1. Have your documents ready: Getting the necessary paperwork ready in advance will save time and worry. It’s essential that you have three months’ bank statements, proof of address (make sure you’re on the electoral roll), along with proof of income, which is essential for the lender to determine affordability. You’ll find a full list of the paperwork you’ll need in our complete guide to mortgage applications.
  2. Check your credit reports: We’d recommend that you check all of your credit reports before you put in your application. By doing this you’ll be able to check the repossession no longer shows on your record or, if it does, sufficient time has passed since it happened to satisfy a lender’s eligibility criteria. This will also flag up any other black marks on your credit rating that you may not be aware of, and gives you the opportunity to challenge any inaccuracies or have outdated information removed. You can download your credit reports through our dedicated credit reports hub.
  3. Speak to a specialist mortgage broker: Once you’ve got your documents ready, we’d recommend that you speak to a mortgage broker who specialises in customers who’ve experienced a repossession. They will be best placed to help you identify lenders who have looked more favourably in the past at applications of this nature. A broker will also be able to help you prepare your application in a way that takes your recent credit issues into account and includes all necessary supporting documentation to give your application the best chance of success.

We offer a free, broker-matching service, that will quickly assess your needs and circumstances, and then pair you with a mortgage advisor who specialises in post-repossession mortgages and is ideally placed to help you – Make an enquiry to get started.

How much deposit will you need?

In the case of bad marks on a credit report, with repossession being the worst (along with bankruptcy), most mortgage providers will want a much higher deposit to offset the perceived financial risk you pose to them.

The larger the deposit you can put down, the more likely the lender is to consider your application.

The chart below will give you an indication of what a mortgage provider may require by way of deposit, taking into consideration the age of the repossession.

Years Since Repossession Deposit Required
12 months or less Up to 35%
1 to 2 Years Up to 30%+
2 to 3 Years Up to 35%+
3 to 4 Years Up to 15-20%
4 to 5 Years Up to 10%+
5 to 6 Years Up to 10%
Over 6 Years Around 5%

The information on this table is indicative only and your chances of securing a mortgage will depend on the lender’s criteria and your unique financial circumstances. Always consult an expert broker before considering an application.

What can you do to improve your chances of getting a mortgage?

Keep a regular check on your credit record

After a repossession, if the rest of your credit history is clean, mortgage lenders may look more favourably on your application.

You can use credit reference agencies, such as Experian, Equifax and Callcredit to check your credit history. Do this before your prospective lender does their own credit search. Their services are free and well worth the time.

If you have other black marks on your credit history, it might be worth delaying your mortgage application for a couple of months while you rebuild your credit rating.

Don’t take on any new financial commitments

It is recommended that you don’t take out any new loans or financial commitments in the weeks or months before applying for a mortgage.

Keep your current financial commitments up to date

Ensure all of your utility bills, rent/mortgage, credit and loan repayments are up to date and are paid promptly. Lenders want to be convinced that you’re financially responsible, and it will go a long way toward helping create a good credit rating.

Lenders who offer mortgages after a repossession

As you can imagine, there are very few high street lenders who are prepared to accept a mortgage application from someone with a repossession on their credit file, as they consider the financial risk too high.

Repossession, along with bankruptcy is considered a very severe adverse credit incident, so expect to be subject to higher deposits and higher interest rates.

This table gives an indication as to the attitude of mortgage providers toward applications from people with repossessions on their credit report.

Mortgage Lender Repossession Bankruptcy
Accord Mortgages Yes, but only after 6 years Yes, if discharged after 6 years
Barclays No Yes, if discharged after 6 years
Bluestone Yes, but only after minimum of 2 years Yes, if discharged after 3 years
Halifax Yes, but only after 6 years Yes, if discharged after 5 years
HSBC No No
Natwest Yes, but only after 6 years Yes, if discharged after 6 years
Santander No No

The information on this table is indicative only and your chances of securing a mortgage will depend on the lender’s criteria and your unique financial circumstances. Always consult an expert broker before considering an application. 

Should you go directly to one of these lenders?

No, it’s not something we’d recommended.

The reason is that the advisor you’ll deal with, works directly for the bank, not for you.

If they perform a ‘hard’ credit check (as they usually will) it will leave a mark on your credit rating. Then if your application is rejected, that mark will be a red flag to other mortgage providers.

Get matched with a broker who specialises in post-repossession mortgages

As you can see, there are some obstacles to overcome when applying for a mortgage with a repossession on your credit history, but it’s not impossible.

If you meet the mortgage providers criteria outlined above, it’s possible to be able to apply for a mortgage, even with a severe adverse credit rating.

But it is essential that you talk to a mortgage broker who is a specialist in finding bad credit mortgages, especially someone who has had a repossession.

They will provide the right advice and help you find a mortgage deal that suits your own individual financial circumstances. Call 0808 189 0463 or make an enquiry and we’ll match you with a broker who specialises in post-repossession mortgages today.

FAQs

How long does a repossession stay on your credit report?

Here in the UK, a repossession will stay on your credit files for up to six years. The good news is that you can still apply for a mortgage within that time, but you’ll need expert advice from a specialist bad credit mortgage broker.

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We can help! We know everyone's circumstances are different, that's why we work with mortgage brokers who are experts in bad credit mortgages. Ask us a question and we'll get the best expert to help.

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Pete Mugleston

Pete Mugleston

Mortgage Expert

About the author

Pete, an expert in all things mortgages, cut his teeth right in the middle of the credit crunch. With plenty of people needing help and few mortgage providers lending, Pete found great success in going the extra mile to find mortgages for people whom many others considered lost causes. The experience he gained, coupled with his love of helping people reach their goals, led him to establish Online Mortgage Advisor, with one clear vision – to help as many customers as possible get the right advice, regardless of need or background.

Pete’s presence in the industry as the ‘go-to’ for specialist finance continues to grow, and he is regularly cited in and writes for both local and national press, as well as trade publications, with a regular column in Mortgage Introducer and being the exclusive mortgage expert for LOVEMoney. Pete also writes for OMA of course!

FCA Disclaimer

*Based on our research, the content contained in this article is accurate as of the most recent time of writing. Lender criteria and policies change regularly so speak to one of the advisors we work with to confirm the most accurate up to date information. The information on the site is not tailored advice to each individual reader, and as such does not constitute financial advice. All advisors working with us are fully qualified to provide mortgage advice and work only for firms that are authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. They will offer any advice specific to you and your needs.

Some types of buy to let mortgages are not regulated by the FCA. Think carefully before securing other debts against your home. As a mortgage is secured against your home, it may be repossessed if you do not keep up with repayments on your mortgage. Equity released from your home will also be secured against it.

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